Este blog es realizado por un grupo de seglares, enamorados del Carmelo Descalzo, que quieren dar a conocer la figura de este insigne hijo de Santa Teresa del s. XX. Eminente Carmelita Descalzo de la Provincia de Castilla, durante 35 años fue confesor y director espiritual de Santa Maravillas de Jesús. Restauró el Santo Desierto de San José de las Batuecas, donde vivió 23 años entregado en soledad a la oración y el sacrificio. Allí definitivamente se unió con el Amado el 14 de junio de 1989 en olor de santidad.

Para comunicar favores, solicitar estampas, realizar donativos, pueden escribir a:


Brief biography of P. Valentin San Jose

Padre Valentin of San Jose (Priscillian Fernandez Arenillas) was born in Castilfalé (Leon) on January 5, 1896. His family was deeply Christian. His parents were Gregorio Fernández and Catherine Arenillas. From them sprang abundant priestly and religious vocations among their children. Of his brothers, two older than him were Discalced Carmelites (Athanasius of Eusebius of St. Joseph and the baby Jesus) and two religious sisters (Angela of St. Joseph, Discalced Carmelite, and Iphigenia, Religious of the Sacred Heart).

Church where he was baptized

He joined the Carmelite Junior Seminary of Medina del Campo (Valladolid) age thirteen years on January 10, 1909, where he studied humanities. His mother had just died recently in Castilfalé (12/24/1908). He took the holy habit in Segovia in 1913 where he completed his novitiate and made his first profession in 1914 age 18. He studied Philosophy and Natural Sciences at the convent of Santa Teresa's foundation in Avila for three years and then in 1917 made his solemn profession. At this ceremony his brother, Eusebio of the Child Jesus, will preach; later he would die as a martyr in the Civil War in Toledo when he was Prior of the convent of that city with his 16 brothers. They were beatified on October 28, 2007.

P. Valentin (without spectacles) with his brother
Blessed Eusebius of the Child Jesus in Cuba

Fray Valentin went to Cuba to avoid military service ( he should join the army of Africa), and that is where he prepared for the priesthood, formed by his own brother. At the time he was ordained priest in Cienfuegos (Cuba) on August 14, 1921 age 25 years.

Since 1925 when returning from Cuba, will make a boundless activity. Professor of Humanities at Medina del Campo from 1926 to 1927, prior of the triennium 1927-30 Segovia, with only 31 years, was master of novices from 1930 to 1939; in 1939 he was elected Provincial of Castile, and was elected on two other occasions in different years. A total of twelve consecutive years Provincial and 11 years successively at Segovia as Prior, Novice Master and Provincial Definitor.

Santa Maravillas of Jesus

Bear in mind that the province was in very poor condition due to the recent Civil War. He becomes the Provincial of the post war and that will lift the Province in all respects with the invaluable help of Santa Maravillas of Jesus to help by paying in full for the construction of the convent of Talavera de la Reina and Batuecas, and largely the restoration of the Theological College of Salamanca. They are difficult years that P. Valentin faces in a serene, wise manner, always trusting in God.

In 1941, they promote the establishment of the "Journal of spirituality" Years later their collaboration will also provide the foundation for Spirituality Publishing.

In 1950, he restored with the help of Santa Maravillas the Holy Desert Batuecas. He would curate in this first period of the Desert from 1951 to 1954 year. In 1966 he returned to the desert where he remained until his death. This is where he most emphatically made his apostolate of the spiritual life.

Padre Valentine with (Saint) Madre Maravillas
in the first 
visit to Duruelo on 25th
 June 1941

The first feature that we should point out in P. Valentin is the great ministry that he performed in the spiritual life. He loves the Barefoot Carmelite Order and its saints. After the difficult years following the council he defended the charism of Teresa's discalced nunsso as not to misrepresent and fulfill what the Second Vatican Council wanted to go back to; the origins of the founding charisms. First of all the P. Valentine is a man of deep inner life, lover of his Discalced Carmelite vocation, and is eager to make known what he loves: Carmelite spirituality.

His pastoral care focused mainly in the Discalced Carmelite nuns who were one of his great loves and the "daughters" in his eyes. In this we must add that he was for more than 40 years confessor of Saint Maravillas of Jesus who always consulted him. He cared especially for the Third Order who worked tirelessly for the promotion and spiritual formation of its members. Another fruitful field of apostolate was through spiritual direction, to which spared no effort or time, and through which came into contact with a world wide relationships in the secular world, even people in the world of culture . He gave hundreds of sets of exercises to both seculars and nuns, always to encourage and revitalize the spiritual life which he considered essential for the renewal of society and the Church.

In this area we are moving in the world of the lay apostolate. It should be noted specially that he was for 24 years Chaplain to the Catholic National Railway Brotherhoods. A specific apostolate on which he was able to print his personal mark and leave an indelible memory. So much so that in those years he was very sick with his gallbladder and was operated on with grave danger. P. Matthias Child Jesus recorded that in those days the church of the Carmelites of Madrid was fullof railworkers and tertiaries asking about the health of P. Valentine.

He made a special effort to make San Juan de la Cruz known in popular environments. In Segovia he began publishing his pocket booklets for disclosure, making it the first distribution centre. Publishing St John's,"Cautions, warnings and statements" in 1929. Building on the Centennial of St John he publishes the works of the saint in paperback and pocket size.

At this point we can not overemphasize his role as a writer of spiritual books. With 20 books he can be compared to the previous spiritual masters Carmelites: Jerome of the Mother of God (Gracian), Juan de Jesus Maria and Thomas of Jesus. They are books that go beyond his own soul, that gives us a reflection of that in him and show his great interest and desire to bring all people to be treated close and personal with God. His books are exclusively spiritual apostolate. He never had interest in moving in the scientific field of mystical or spiritual theology, he moves in the field of his own experience and tries to transmit this to others. Perhaps this is the reason why in selected environments so little appreciation is given to the work of writer P. Valentine and his books instead have been so well received by large groups of every kind, with interest in the spiritual life as well as his followers, the Discalced Carmelite nuns. The success and acceptance of his works is shown by the repeated editions of several of his books.

Padre San Jose Valentin was a master in the ways of the spirit. Through his own experience he learned to lead others toward a deeper intimacy with God. As mentioned above so many people through his words and writings came to the spirituality of Carmel. Nuns and lay people carefully kept notes of his lectures and spiritual direction.

Padre Valentine was a man deeply in love with God. He gave the impression of being a serious man and rectum. But behind the appearance, if you tried a bit, you immediately discovered in him a man of deep mystery and vibrancy. He was a man who was polite, gentle and soft. Willing to meet anyone with great charity.

His last years 23 years of his life were spent in the Desert of Batuecas that, as stated above, he had restored. He lived until his last days the observance of a hermit of the Desert. He spent many hours a day and at night in silent prayer before the tabernacle. The monks who lived with him in the Desert give witness of his exemplary life spent in assiduous prayer, austerity and manual labour, to which he attached great importance and that every day spent several hours doing despite his advanced age.

The practice of the presence of God he strongly recommended as a young master of novices. He always sought the loving presence all day, to undertake occupations spiritual or corporal. To a trusted person he says in a letter:

"I am full of God. So full that I have no free space or a hollow in me. I desire nothing. I offered everything to God and he filled me ... I would've given him all and God has taken me and is filling me. I was blessed when I determined to die to myself for God and God lives in me and is my life! "

The inner life of love and care for God was his concern and passion at the same time offering the most glory in ceaseless prayers for the salvation and sanctification of men, the Church ... In recent years he suffered a great spiritual desolation. It was so awful his "dark night" that made him mourn bitterly. It was the feeling of not having correspond to God in the same way that God gave himself to him. It was his great desire to find all in God while having to live in the limitation of human nature.

Padre Valentine at Las Batuecas
You drew the curtain that separated us here.During the last year of his life he suffered major leg ulcers and heart failure with acute discomfort, especially at night in permanent insomnia and in the last months he was unable to walk. A physical suffering must be added to the moral ones that were even more terrible. As taught by St. John of the Cross, Father Valentin suffered the last years of his life a Passive Dark Night of Spirit. The internal purge was manifested in a fear of death, a separation from God. The Lord wanted to empty the writer of Joy also to die of such property as to carry supernatural loving union with the Bridegroom. On June 14, 1989 he expired in his cell in the Desert, without agony and almost without anyone realizing . In that supreme moment was ultimately fulfilled that which he wrote about death,. Beatific Union:

He was a Discalced Carmelite embodied, deeply coherent to death in what he believed. If anything we can say that what characterized his life was a deep thirst for God, to give Him the Whole for whom he always sighed from the depths of his soul. And this thirst led him to see that many people know and experience God and his action in people who are led by His Spirit. He lived and died in the odor of sanctity. It is curious that even today many young people who come to Father Valentine and find in him a master and an initiator in Carmelite spirituality.

No hay comentarios:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...